Message Font: Serif | Sans-Serif
No. of Recommendations: 4
TomG wrote (emphasis added),
I wonder about the conclusion that SARS is seriously hurting the airlines today. As the airlines lobby hard for government aid packages, and try to explain away poor executive leadership and short-sighted unions. . . well, why not blame it all on SARS!

I see too many reasons to blame a disease to take this at face value.

I agree, Tom. This is simply the next excuse for the poor business model of the airline industry (except for Southwest and possibly Jet Blue).

The argument that the 9/11 attacks would destroy the airline industry came first. (Of course several of these same airlines were already on the verge of Bankruptcy before, but whose counting :-)

That's right, the slowdown in travel due to fear over 9/11 was going to destroy the airline industry. This carried a considerable amount of weight of truth with me and most people back then, because fear of travel was real and at the heart of that was the looming possibility of fundamental change to the airline industry (read: expensive to airlines).

The changes came, they weren't so fundamental, and everyone adapted but the airlines (again except SWA who has seemed to do fine), and this great restaurant/bar at Providence airport that you can no longer eat/drink at without having to go through security afterward (don't they get it?).

Maybe, the airlines cried, a huge government bailout would "save" them. Why? What were they changing in their business models. Not much. The service got worse, the food got worse or disappeared entirely, and the fees for everything under the sun shot through the roof.

What some people have come to realize (I hope most people by now) is that if th airlines were truly all "going under" the government would federalize the whole system as a national security initiative, albeit at huge expense to us all. We can't not have air travel in this country or globally. (My high school English teachers are cringing at the double negative, but you get the point.) So, if we were ever facing a real threat to end the airline industry, you can bet the fingers of Uncle Sam would be in that apple pie.

After all, bailing out industries on the brink of going under is as American as, well, apple pie.

Sorry, airlines, SARS is not it. Time to try another excuse for your poor business model. Or better yet, maybe you should actually expend your energies trying to improve yourselves rather than finding convenient events/things/people to blame for your troubles.

I mean this isn't even a different excuse- it's the exact same one as used after 9/11- that's right, the slowdown in travel due to fear was going to destroy the airline industry. Sound familiar? Read the beginning of the post again.

Thanks for the post- it reminded me of how bogus their arguments/excuses were, are, and will be.

-Scott (slaramee)
Airline Business Model Hatin' Fool
Print the post  


What was Your Dumbest Investment?
Share it with us -- and learn from others' stories of flubs.
When Life Gives You Lemons
We all have had hardships and made poor decisions. The important thing is how we respond and grow. Read the story of a Fool who started from nothing, and looks to gain everything.
Contact Us
Contact Customer Service and other Fool departments here.
Work for Fools?
Winner of the Washingtonian great places to work, and Glassdoor #1 Company to Work For 2015! Have access to all of TMF's online and email products for FREE, and be paid for your contributions to TMF! Click the link and start your Fool career.